My name is Carson Lance and I am a new professional in Boston.
Originally from Southern Indiana with some time in Louisville, Kentucky and Northwest Ohio, I know a decent amount about the Midwest. I am accustomed to a hard work ethic, the importance of a good casserole, and county fairs being the biggest thing to happen in your county. I pledge allegiance to all major sports, the local ice cream stand, and any respite from the thick, “cut it with a knife” humidity. The Midwest gets the newest song last, but friendships first.
The Midwest is a region of the United States centered on the community. The region prides itself on strong familial ties, tight social networks, and being up-to-date with everyone’s business. People stop each other in the local grocery store to find out “how the folks are.” Phone calls with friends last hours, and that is considered normal.
People are caring, optimistic, and respectful. They don’t want to cause drama or tell you their thoughts, unless provoked. Folks are dedicated to their work, and will continue to work even if they are not the happiest with their current situation. They will defend their family name.
So, why am I here in Boston?
I took an oath when I began job searching last March that I would be looking for entry-level jobs advising fraternities and sororities outside of my home state of Indiana and the four states surrounding it (Kentucky, Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio). I decided that in order to learn more about myself, I must learn about myself in some place else. For me to grow in my personal and professional development, I needed to take the path of most resistance and step into the unknown.
This transition has not been easy, nor will it continue to be easy. Transplanting myself into a new region with certain cultural norms that are not my own is difficult. Living here without a steady social network is lonely. But I know if I continue to step outside of my comfort zone, I will find clarity in my purpose.
So if you are transitioning into a new year, a new place, and/or a new role, don’t be afraid of what is in front of you. Accept the challenge gracefully, find resources to keep you motivated, and celebrate the small wins of making new changes for the better.